If you have experienced water damage or have a moisture problem indoors, within 72 hours, mold is likely to start growing. Although mold and its spores are literally everywhere, active mold growth still requires moisture. If excessive dampness or water is present somewhere indoors, mold will begin to grow on spaces, including drywall, ceilings, under carpets, under sinks and even behind drywall and in attics.
Mold growth indoors can be unpleasant to look at and might even give off an odor. If not treated, exposure to mold may result in a variety of health effects. Some people are affected more adversely than others. Reports of respiratory symptoms, headaches and other physical issues have been made by people exposed to indoor mold. Aside from just mold, wet or damp spaces are likely to harbor mold break-down products, dust mites, bacteria, etc.
In 2004, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published a report noting detailed consideration of evidence available on the health effects of indoor dampness and dampness-related agents. Their findings noted there was sufficient evidence of an association of upper respiratory tract symptoms, wheezing, coughing and asthma symptoms in sensitized people to exposure to damp indoor environments. And, sufficient evidence of an association of upper respiratory tract symptoms, wheezing, coughing, asthma symptoms in sensitized people and hypersensitivity pneumonitis to presence of mould or other agents in damp indoor environments. Note the difference in the findings? In addition, prolonged exposure to mold indoors may increase the risk of bronchitis and other respiratory infections. Bacteria or chemical emissions from mold may be responsible for this.
In other published pieces, authors have noted that mold exposure is capable of putting one’s health at risk and stated the need for standardized assessments of environmental mold, coupled with clinical evaluation of the patient in question in order to diagnose illnesses such as asthma and shortness of breath. In 2011, Reponen and colleagues published the findings of a study of 176 children, followed from birth through the age of seven. The children’s homes were assessed for mold growth using a research tool developed and evaluated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The children were examined for signs and symptoms of asthma at age one and then again at age seven. The assessment showed that children at one year of age, who were living in homes with ongoing mold growth, were more likely to develop asthma by the age of seven.
Although, it is difficult to say definitively whether the presence of mold indoors is the cause of an individual’s respiratory allergies and asthma, an examination and testing by a medical professional is recommended to identify the possible causes of these illnesses. Once the common causes are ruled out in these tests, the patient should be evaluated for exposure to mold.
Based on published research, there is evidence suggesting that exposure to damp indoor spaces is likely to have an adverse effect on your health including respiratory irritation, headaches and other physical symptoms. Remember if moisture exists, mold can begin to grow within 72 hours. Don’t put you and your family at risk! If you think you have mold, talk to the mold remediation experts at H2O Drying Solutions. Our team can do an assessment and provide you with an estimate as well as information about strategies to help you combat mold. In addition, we also deal with insurance companies and we are available 24/7 in the event of an emergency. We are just one call away! 1-877-251-1751